Local News

  • School committee set to meet

    The School Liaison Committee didn’t meet last month.

    Board of Education Chairperson Nadine Jackson said the meeting was cancelled at the board’s request.

    “I’ve also requested that a topic for each future meeting should be provided, so that we can invite the director or any school system employees that might be helpful in any discussion in the future,” she said.

    The School Liaison Committee is comprised of members of the school board and County Commission. The committee last met on Nov. 27.

  • Harriman puts their meeting minute archives online

    By Richard Evans

    In an effort to make Harriman city records as transparent as possible, an effort is underway to update the city’s website, which can be found at www.cityofharriman.net.

    Kenny Humphrey, administrative assistant to the city manager, said minutes from city council meetings dating back to 1999 are now available on the website.

    He explained that those records were already available digitally and it was a quick process to convert them to pdf files and make them available on the website.

  • A View From Lick Skillet: Looking to the future, while remembering the past

    Well, gentle reader, we commence another new year. For some folks this is a time for New Year’s Resolutions; not so for the old curmudgeon. However, we think this an opportune time to consider our plans for this column for the coming year.

  • New Tazewell man busted for solicitation of a person under age 18

    A New Tazewell man got a ride to Kingston last week to meet someone who he thought was a 16-year-old female.

    Paul Aaron Ray, 30, is charged with solicitation of a person under the age of 18.

    The person he was chatting with was actually an undercover law enforcement officer.

    “On Dec. 28, 2018, Paul Ray chatted with a Facebook Messenger profile that he believed to be a 16-year-old female living in Kingston, Tenn., at 1000 Ladd Landing Blvd.,” the warrant said.

  • Roane County Animal Shelter changes hours

    The Roane County Animal Shelter will begin new hours of operation next week.

    Beginning Monday, Jan. 7, the Roane County Animal Shelter will be closed to the public on Monday of each week.

    Hours of operation for Tuesday through Saturday will remain 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

    “We have made so many positive changes over the past year and we are diligently working to keep improving,” said director Stacey Vance Whittenberg.

  • Farr reports to start his sentence

    Kendrick Edd Farr reported to the Roane County Jail on New Year’s Day to start serving his 10-year prison sentence.

    The 29-year-old pleaded guilty to attempted especially aggravated kidnapping in August.

    The crime happened over Thanksgiving weekend in 2016.

    The victim was 5-years-old.

    Farr was sentenced on Dec. 14.

    Prosecutors wanted him taken into custody immediately, but Criminal Court Judge Jeff Wicks gave him until 9 a.m. on Jan. 1 to report to the Roane County Jail to start serving the sentence.

  • Ex priest dies while in prison

    A former Catholic Priest who pastored churches in Harriman and Lenoir City before being convicted of child molestation, died in prison this week.

    Edward McKeown, 74, died while serving a 25-year sentence at South Central Correctional Facility in Clifton, according to reports from the prison.

    McKeown, removed from the priesthood in 1989, was convicted in 1999 of raping a teenage boy.

    He was eligible to be released from prison in 2020.


    By Richard Evans

    Harriman suffered a staggering loss last Friday night when Chuck’s Deli, a longtime city fixture, was destroyed by fire.

    And though the fire was a shock, owners Jim and Sonya Shillings plan to rebuild and reopen.

    “We’re optimistic but we’re at the mercy of insurance at the moment. We’re waiting on estimates but as quick as we can we want to get back up and running for our customers and for our employees. They can’t go without jobs,” said Jim Shillings.

  • Policy could nix valedictorians, salutatorians

    More changes could be coming to the class ranking policy for Roane County Schools.

    The Board of Education approved the latest revision on first reading during its Dec. 13 meeting.

    “There’s no way you’ll ever get everybody satisfied,” Board Member Sam Cox said.

    According to the revised policy, the school system will no longer publicly recognize valedictorians and salutatorians starting with the class of 2021.